medical woes

i forget if i mentioned, jared broke his finger a week or two ago while playing soccer. apparently he broke the joint, or the bone very close to the joint. he met with a surgeon yesterday, who took x-rays to see how it was healing & suggested taking a piece of bone from jared’s hand & grafting it to the bone in his finger to make it heal better. (??? or something. i wasn’t there & am not a surgeon so i’m not going to claim i totally understand it all.) the surgeon said there was a risk that jared could develop arthritis or some other long-term usage issues in that finger without the surgery. however, surgery would extend the healing process for an extra six weeks, during which time jared would not be allowed to lift anything heavier than a pound. including ramona. he also wouldn’t be able to wash dishes, cook, etc…

when he told me this, i kind of jokingly said, “that’s it. i am completely against the surgery.” but actually? i really am kind of completely against it! it would be different if it was, like, his knee or something really important. but it’s a joint in his pinkie finger. that’s not even a super-important finger. & i think i am living proof that you don’t need an injury in order to get arthritis. i don’t know what the hell i would do if i was suddenly responsible for all of ramona’s care, all of the cooking, all of the cleaning, all by myself…i mean, i guess i could probably muddle through for six weeks…but it’s more likely that we would all die. i stopped cooking while i was pregnant because i was so tired all the time & eventually “jared does the cooking” is just part of our household division of labor. i wash the diapers, jared makes dinner. i wash the breakfast dishes, jared washes the dinner dishes. jared gets up with the baby, i attempt to keep her alive while he’s at work.

thankfully, jared seems to be a bit skeptical of the surgery as well. a bone graft seems like kind of a big step to take for a pinkie finger. he’s wearing a splint & it’s starting to heal. the finger might heal the tiniest bit crooked, or be predisposed to arthritis in 25 years. he seems to be okay with rolling those dice.

in more medical news, i have an appointment with a rheumatologist next month. it’s actually the same rheumatologist i saw in 2010, who did a blood test for rheumatoid arthritis & then dismissed me without so much as a “have a nice life” when it came back negative. as far as i can tell, my current physical ailments include: spinal stenosis, at least one completely herniated lumbar disc, adult degenerative scoliosis, osteoarthritis in my spine, tendinitis in my right knee & left shoulder, & bursitis in my hips. (is that everything? i think so.) but why then do i have such pervasive problems with my hands? it doesn’t feel like joint pain. it mostly happens when i have to grip something: holding ramona’s hands to clip her nails or help her walk, holding the steering wheel of the car, holding the handles of ramona’s stroller, holding utensils to eat or cook (because i do have to make my own lunch while jared is at work), using scissors (that’s the WORST!), holding books & magazines while i’m reading, & even typing, because of the position in which i hold my hands to type (i never learned to type properly). however, i pass grip tests. i have an ability to grip. it’s just agony to do it. but look at the list above: what choice do i have? it’s not like there’s a way for me to live life without ever having to turn a door knob, button a button, or hold a fork. i’m hoping the rheumatologist will have some insight for me, & perhaps some ideas on treatment.

i’m also having intermittent night blindness in my right eye. ??? this happened while i was pregnant too. my ob-gyn was concerned that it was related to the pre-eclampsia. & maybe it was. but obviously i am not pregnant or suffering from pre-eclampsia now. my blood pressure is perfect. my regular doctor ran a bunch of tests to make sure my liver & kidney functions were okay, & they are. so i’m not sure what’s up with this. it’s very unsettling though.

enough complaining! mostly i wrote all that stuff down so i wouldn’t forget it the next time i speak to some sort of medical person. it seems like i always forget the important stuff when the time actually comes to talk to someone about it.

sewing! i haven’t done much lately. i still want to make myself some more shirts, & i’ve also decided that i really need a new purse. my nicest purse is by queen bee & i love it, but it’s wool. i hate carrying it in the summertime because it’s so scratchy. so i want to make myself a summertime purse that has as much style, structure, & functionality as the queen bee purse (if not more!), but isn’t wool. i’ve never sewn a bag or purse before, so this will be an exciting new adventure.

i also desperately need to make ramona a new sunbonnet now that her head is bigger, i want to get going on the jellyfish sailor dress, i’m planning to make myself some summer-y pajamas, & i’m kicking around ideas for a new quilt for ramona. not because she has any need for one. just because i want to make her one. i haven’t made a quilt since i finished the quilt for david & alana in december. although i’ve done plenty of sewing since then, i do miss the unique calm that comes with piecing a quilt. those tidy little seam allowances, chain-stitching, getting to use a rotary cutter instead of heavy hand-murdering sewing shears…(i do cut fabric for clothing with the rotary cutter sometimes, but it’s easier to do curves & details with scissors).

i feel like i didn’t write about what i meant to write about here. but i’m not sure what i meant to write about. maybe next time?

Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

2 thoughts on “medical woes

  1. Is it possible the night blindness is due to a vitamin A deficiency? It’s not a very popular diagnosis these days since the medical establishment decided in the 90s that supplemental vitamin A is “toxic”, but it might be worth looking into and perhaps eating more liver or taking cod liver oil to see if that helps. I used to have night blindness issues about 10 years ago, but it stopped being a problem at some point and I can’t help but wonder in retrospect if the fact that I happened to start taking in more vitamin A played a part. Otherwise, some night blindness does appear to have genetic origins. Good luck in any case.

    1. eh, i doubt it. i looked up which foods are high in vitamin A, & most of them (sweet potatoes, kale, squash, etc) are already things i eat a ton of.

      my mom is night blind, but in both eyes. maybe it’s just a weird fluky getting-older thing?

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